Tag Archives: times of the hg wells

Spotlight on the Zetal in Fan Fiction

Spotlight on the Zetal

The Zetal: in order to try to finally wrap up the HG Wells storyline, I needed a sort of garden variety villain. That was the Var-gi-yeh. They would come from outside our solar system, and therefore it would help if we had an early warning of some sort.

I reached back into my older work and found the Zetal.

Background

Barking up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | The Zetal
The Zetal

Back in Together, the Witannen and the Imvari capture ten humans for war games on a grand scale. But they are actually working for a third party, a species in the Andromeda Galaxy, the Zetal.

This species was meant to be more or less incorporeal. However, I did not have much on them. In Together, it was considerably easier to just work with the Imvari and the Witannen. Species which are more or less our basic body type are just easier to deal with. The reader or viewer can relate to them better. And, truly, so can the writer. After all, I needed to get the story down on pixels.

If a character is hard for even the writer to relate to, then the character is just not going to be written. That is unfortunate, as they are kind of interesting on paper. But I have very little on them. They are a piece of bringing Trek out of our galaxy and into our galactic neighbor. That is not enough, though. There just is not enough ‘there’, there.

Upshot

If I need to pull in an Andromeda Galaxy species, then they might be it, and I would do more with them. They certainly could use an overhaul and some love from their creator! Right now, though, they remain a semi-useful curiosity and not much more.

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Review – Timeless

Review – Timeless

Timeless is where I just wanted to put right what I felt had gone wrong. But of course you can’t really do that. Hence it serves as almost (almost!) my own personal Quantum Leap episode, much like Theorizing.

Background

When actor Leonard Nimoy passed away, there was a special free write and the idea of ‘saving’ him was an irresistible one. Add in the crew from the Temporal Integrity Commission, and a little bit of silliness got to creep in as well.

Plot

Barking up the muse tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Clockworks - Deep Future | Timeless
Clockworks – Deep Future

Therefore, in 3115, the Human Unit at the Temporal Integrity Commission decides to save one special Vulcan.

I wanted Spock (a character I have always had something of a love/hate relationship with – I tend to see Dr. McCoy’s point of view more than Spock’s in the old TOS arguments) to have a kind of ethereal quality. Plus I wanted the TIC to occasionally bend their own rules. The action takes place after they have done just that, and saved Milena Chelenska on her deathbed. Hence there is a precedent for this behavior, and the precedent even winds back to First Born and saving Jun Daniels Sato.

Because Spock Prime is also a part of the Eriecho stories (and the Kelvin timeline in canon, of course), this act affects numerous timelines. Megaotric? Maybe not exactly, but it’s definitely a pariotric change.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is rated K.

Upshot

In some ways, I may have overdone things. Spock gets his resurrection and, in a way, so does Leonard Nimoy. Yet some of it feels like I was forcing a square peg into a round hole.

Yet in addition, it also feels almost unfair that this cannot really happen. Science, get on this, stat!

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Review – Calendar Turning Event #3111

Review – Calendar Turning Event #3111

Background

As the real calendar turned from 2013 to 2014, I hit upon the idea of having the Temporal Integrity Commission celebrate a bit. This celebration, because it’s the TIC, would have a bit of a twist and adventure to it.

Review – Calendar Turning Event #3111
Review – Calendar Turning Event #3111

Plot

Otra D’Angelo is throwing a new year’s party, and everyone in the TIC is invited, not just the Human Unit. Admiral Carmen Calavicci has her charges together, but Levi Cavendish has not thought ahead part enough to bring her a gift. Carmen is well aware that he has Adult ADHD and is squirrelly and has human relationship problems even on his best days. But she still feels that’s rude. When the gifts go missing during a transport, and then Carmen and Levi do as well, they have to work together in order to get back.

Story Postings

Rating

The story is rated K.

Upshot

I like this little look into the Commission but also into how difficult Levi really can be, and how Carmen makes a lot of allowances for his brilliance.

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Recurrent Themes – Unintentional Time Travelers

Recurrent Themes – Unintentional Time Travelers

Background

Time travel is such a great trope that I just had to cover it. Barking up the Muse Tree | Janet Gershen-Siegel | jespah | DNA | Unintentional Time TravelersThe most fun was when time travelers didn’t really want to go, but something or other swept them along anyway.

Appearances

Barking up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel |  Times of the HG Wells logo courtesy of TemplarSora
Barking up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | Times of the HG Wells logo courtesy of TemplarSora | Unintentional Time Travelers

Unintentional time travelers are such a fun idea to explore that I’ve gone to this well several times.

Concord

Concord is all about unintentional and intentional time travel.

Robert Lenox

Lenox, the real time traveler, is testing out a new device when Reed is accidentally swept along, and Reed’s ancestor is also displaced, as is Lenox’s own ancestor.

Malcolm Reed

Right before the start of the Xindi War, Malcolm is accidentally transported to 1775 Concord, Massachusetts.

Crackerjack

In Crackerjack,  inadvertent time travel occurs because the errant pulse shot from Empress Hoshi (and the Temper story) hits Wesley and Geordi’s shuttle.

Wesley Crusher

For Wesley, the trip to 1941 Washington, DC is a voyage that he would rather not have taken.

Geordi LaForge

For Geordi, the voyage to Washington, DC in 1941 is the occasion to meet Rosemary Parker, although he also feels the effects of the prejudice of the time.

Day of the Dead

The Traveler is to blame for Chuck McBride and Tripp Tucker traveling in time.

Chuck McBride

McBride the jokester is yanked out of Upper Bavaria, but it’s never made clear as to exactly where and when he ends up.

Tripp Tucker

Tucker’s personal temporal displacement gets him to the 1944 liberation of the Dachau concentration camp.

The Continuing Adventures of Porthos – The Future Cat

Another pesky anomaly sends Porthos forward in time, in The Continuing Adventures of Porthos.

Porthos

The NX-01‘s resident quadruped takes his  temporal displacement in stride, and makes friends with Data’s cat, Spot, although Porthos does miss Archer.

E2 Timeline

For both kicks back in time, the entire ship unwittingly travels in time.

The Entire NX-01

No one is left behind when the Enterprise is kicked back in time.

Theorizing

In Theorizing, whatever is leaping Sam Beckett around does it to Jonathan Archer, too.

Captain Jonathan Archer

Archer’s mission is to help Sam Beckett’s wife, Donna Elise, move on with her life.

Dr. Sam Beckett

Dr. Beckett’s mission is to convince the Xindi Humanoid, Degra, that the deaths of millions of humans like Lizzie Tucker should be on his conscience.

Upshot

I adore this trope so much that I am continually trying to figure out another way to shoehorn it into my fan fiction.

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Portrait of a Character – Gregory Shaw

Portrait of a Character – Gregory Shaw

Origins

When I began to develop the Times of the HG Wells series, I created a number of characters which could be called upon at various times. One was an animals whisperer, a holdover from when I had created a wholly original time travel series. Enter Greg Shaw.

Portrayal

Gregory is played by actor Blair Underwood.

Portrait of a Character – Gregory Shaw
Blair Underwood as Gregory Shaw

I like this smart, attractive actor. I just wish I had used the character more. As things currently stand, he is barely shown, and I should rectify that.

Personality

Gentle with animals and understanding of them, Greg is essentially just a really good guy. However, when time is altered, he becomes Pope Gregory XXXII in The Point is Probably Moot.

Relationships

Gregory has no known relationships in either universe.

Mirror Universe

Portrait of a Character – Gregory Shaw
Blair Underwood as Mirror Gregory Shaw

There are really no impediments to Gregory existing in the Mirror Universe.

Because there would be no need whatsoever for an animals whisperer there, even in the very deep future (after all, that is a universe with multiple extinctions, including giraffes, as is noted in Temper), I can see him as being more sophisticated. It is also unlikely that he would be Pope or a religious man as religion would generally be seen as being a kind of devotion in direct conflict with the required devotion to be given to the Emperor or other leaders (as Empress Hoshi had required, in Bread).

So, what does Gregory do? He might be an artist and, therefore, an elite. Or maybe he would be yet another soldier or security officer. I don’t see him as being a misplaced idealist like Anthony Parker.

Quote (not a direct quote)

Pope Gregory XXXII today announced that meatless Fridays are back in effect. All believers are advised to shop for fish or vegetarian specialties on Thursdays, so as to be prepared.

Upshot

This descendant of Colonel Jack Shaw and Juliet Parker has had almost no screen time. I should rectify that.

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Portrait of a Character – Annette (Windy) (Pollan) Bradley

Portrait of a Character – Annette (Windy) (Pollan) Bradley

Origins

I wanted a hippie chick for Richard Daniels to hook up with in 1970 Kent State, and for him to meet at a protest. Enter Windy.

Portrayal

Windy is portrayed by Melanie Mayron.

Portrait of a Character – Annette (Windy) (Pollan) Bradley
Annette “Windy” Bradley in 1970

I love how authentic she looks, particularly in the image I have selected, which is from a film called Girlfriends.

She is not meant to be knock out beautiful.

Personality

Portrait of a Character – Annette (Windy) (Pollan) Bradley
Annette Bradley Pollan, an older image that Rick sees in an alternate history

Casual and a bit cynical, Windy is the kind of woman who Rick often ends up with. She is free with her sexuality but also friendly and sympathetic. In 1970, just before the shootings at Kent State University, they talk about the possibility of him being sent to Viet Nam to fight in the war. They go to bed together having known each other for only a few hours. He leaves in the morning when the shooting starts, but their parting is at least somewhat cordial.

When he and Sheilagh Bernstein return in order to repair the issues with the timeline that they themselves have created, he has to leave a lot more abruptly, and ducks out before she wakes up. Angry at him, and at herself for being so free with her body, Windy at least pays lip service to the idea of maybe not having sex quite so quickly, and choosing her partners a bit more carefully.

She never learns that he is a time traveler.

Relationships

Windy’s hookup with Rick can hardly be called a relationship. In the alternate timeline, her married name is Pollan (named for Back to the Future‘s Michael J. Fox‘s real-life wife, Tracy Pollan), but there is nothing about her husband or whether they remain wed for life.

Theme Music

Of course Windy’s music is the Association’s Windy. The song was popular three years before 1970 and it is the kind of bouncy, optimistic song that a girl of maybe 16 – 18 years of age would like and want to use as her nickname.

Mirror Universe

There is no reason why Annette can’t exist in the Mirror Universe. But I don’t think she’d call herself Windy.

Portrait of a Character – Annette (Windy) (Pollan) Bradley
Annette in the Mirror Universe

I feel she would be like a lot of the Mirror Universe women I write – overly dependent on men for their happiness, safety, and well-being.

Quote

“Right. It all seems so sterile. If we could really see the times, you know, somehow insert ourselves into history and really be there, man, that would surely be amazing.”

Upshot

For a woman who Rick never sees again, he does remember her, and even keeps a souvenir – a pair of quarters she had saved up for her laundry.


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Spotlight on Ring Phasers

Spotlight on Ring Phasers

Ring phasers were a quick idea to solve a problem I did not expect.

Background

Spotlight on Ring Phasers
Ring Phaser (actually a Za’Tarc ring from the Stargate universe)

When I originally wrote the Times of the HG Wells series, I had an idea that there would be small phasers. However, I did not really fully develop the concept. Because, in canon, phasers have fairly steadily gotten smaller in size. Therefore, it made some sense  to have them, in the very deep future, be rather small pieces of equipment. This also worked as a cover, for Rick Daniels and other time travelers would need to carry a weapon to a lot of time periods where carrying such a weapon would be problematic.

Appearance

It was not until Multiverse II and Another Piece of the Action that I realized that this would be rather useful.

Spotlight on Ring Phasers
English: Ring made of tungsten (tungstencarbide?) Deutsch: Ring aus Wolframcarbid (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For characters needing to hide a phaser (and maybe even make it look like something else), the idea of a ring configuration works.

And for female time travelers in particular in history, they could even place the ring phaser onto their left ring finger and claim that it was a wedding ring.

The idea is that the ring phaser is about as plain and nondescript as the idea to the right. Furthermore, time travelers would often have to worry about theft and beatings. Therefore, the article could not intentionally appear ostentatious or particularly expensive.

Upshot

For a small afterthought type of original technology, I think it turned out pretty well. It would not shock me if a deep future storyline, either in the books or some hypothetical to-be-aired series or film, featured something like them.

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Portrait of a Character – Von

Portrait of a Character – Von

Origins

Portrait of a Character – Von
Von Hayes

I needed a bad guy character for the Times of the HG Wells series who would not be found out immediately. Enter Von, who is named for retired Phillies outfielder Von Hayes (yet another backhanded reference to Jay Hayes).

Von was meant to be someone who Carmen and Kevin in particular would rely on, mistakenly, for far too long as temporal damage continued to happen.

Portrayal

I see Peter Dinklage in this role.

Portrait of a Character – Von
Peter Dinklage as Von

The actor is brilliant and interesting; I feel he can play pretty much any role thrown at him.

Frankly, I am a bit surprised that I have not yet seen a photomanipulation of him in a Star Trek uniform or as a Ferengi or any other species (including human).

Personality

A bit secretive and paranoid, Von has plenty of reason to be so – he is working in cahoots with the Perfectionists, the enemy faction. But he also has a softer side. There is a garden in the center of the Temporal Integrity Commission. Even though he is not required to do so, he is the one who prunes the roses and tends to the day lilies and lilacs and whatnot. He uses an old-fashioned pair of shears that figure somewhat prominently in Spring Thaw.

Relationships

Von has no known relationships at this time.

Mirror Universe

Portrait of a Character – Von
Mirror Von

There aren’t necessarily any impediments to Von existing in the Mirror Universe. Perhaps he’d be honorable, but I really would prefer him as being tightly wound.

Quote

“Anyone can use those shears. I know she did.”

Upshot

I like this character but he was sorely underutilized. I’m not sure if or when or how I could possibly revisit him, but he was a character with potential who should have had more depth to him.

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Review – He Stays a Stranger

Review – He Stays a Stranger

He stays a stranger works as a bookend to The Stranger, because Rick never really gets to know anyone until Milena.

Barking Up the Muse Tree | jespah | Janet Gershen-Siegel | He Stays a Stranger
He Stays a Stranger

Background

Back when I was originally putting together a wholly original time travel fantasy series, I came up with the story lines for A Long, Long Time Ago; Spring Thaw; and this one.  The idea of Goodman, Schwerner, and Cheney being saved, only to be lost again, was a sadly compelling one.

Further, I needed a way to complete the time travel series. The title was perfect.

Plot

As the previous book, Shake Your Body, ends, Rick Daniels has been wiped from existence. The imperfect state of the Master Time File means that he, personally, stays and survives, but no one knows who he is. Rick is almost stateless. Hence it’s as if he is thoroughly cut off from everyone else.  The most painful moment for Rick is when his own mother doesn’t know him, and his sister, Eleanor, screams for Security.

How it all works out, and what happens to Milena Chelenska, and the rest of the gang at the Temporal Integrity Commission, can be learned by reading the book, of course. However, I’ll admit I am not thrilled with the ending for Carmen Calavicci and a few others, like Polly Porter. I essentially just ran out of space.

Music

Story Postings

Rating

The story is Rated T.

Upshot

I like the overall feel of it, particularly as it disperses the darkness of the series and brings it back to light. In particular, with the incredible longevity of Branch Borodin, it feels like my characters, in a way, will never die. Because I often have troubling letting go of characters, that ‘fact’ made it a lot easier to end this series. Although there are sequels because I can’t keep my hands off stuff!

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Spotlight – Temporal Enhancer cuff/enzyme

Spotlight on Temporal Enhancer cuff/enzyme

The Temporal Enhancer cuff was a weird idea.

Background

I wanted a kind of strange means of controlling time travel.

Spotlight – Temporal Enhancer cuff and enzyme
Temporal Enhancer Cuff

However, the means would be the antithesis of canon.  Therefore, I decided, the best and clearest way to accomplish this feat would be by making almost a biological means of traveling in time. Yes, it is that bizarre.

For a time traveler such as Helen Walker, it is a three-step process. First, she puts on the cuff.  Then a separate controller selects the time and place. Then the subject swallows the enzyme, Trichronium. In this case, the subject is Helen. And then the process of traveling in time begins. The physical transference process is somewhat similar to the canon act of beaming from one place to another. Helen even reports that the enzyme tastes a little bit like cantaloupe.

As for the invention and the process, I am somewhat mixed in my assessment of it. I think it is a decent idea but not necessarily with the greatest of executions. For one thing, the name of the enzyme is far too close to the name I had already created for a nerve toxin, Tricoulamine.

With rather different purposes for both of these chemical compounds, the all too similar names could potentially prove confusing. In addition, the use of numerical prefixes for nearly all originally-created chemical compounds (e. g. bicoulamine and quatromenaline) made for a far too predictable naming convention.

Upshot

As I note above, I believe that the idea was a decent one. It was most assuredly a unique one. However, the execution left far too much to be desired. What could have been a great invention turned out to just be okay. And that is not a good thing!

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